American cyclists killed by Isis in Tajikistan

An American couple who’d been traveling the world on their bicycles were killed in an Isis attack.

Jay Austin (29) and his girlfriend, Lauren Geoghegan (29), from Washington DC were killed on Sunday 29 July in an Isis attack in Tajikistan in Central Asia. The country is surrounded by Afghanistan.

The couple last year decided to quit their jobs, leaving their lives in Washington and using all their savings to explore the world on their bikes, CBS News reports.

The pair, along with two other cyclists, were killed about 80km outside the capital city of Dushanbe when a car with five knife-wielding men came knocked them over.

The other two cyclists, from the Netherlands and Switzerland respectively, also died in the attack.

Isis has since taken responsibility for the devastating attack, People reports.

Lauren and Jay had started their journey in Africa and had also already cycled through Europe and Central Asia. They’d been planning to go to Uzbekistan next.

“On Sunday my beautiful and beloved niece Lauren Geoghegan (29) and her amazing boyfriend, Jay Austin, were tragically killed while adventure-cycling in Tajikistan,” Lauren’s aunt posted on Facebook, according to the Daily Mail.

“They were the target of a horrific terrorist attack. There are no words. Our family is shocked and devastated by this senseless loss.

“Lauren and Jay chronicled their journey and experiences with fabulous photographs and captivating blogs. In tribute to them. I invite you to visits their website so that we can remember them for the dream they were outrageously living out and not the way they died.”


Austin worked for seven years at the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and Lauren was a senior admissions officer at Georgetown University before the pair decided to go on their bike adventure.

“He was just a gentle soul who cared about the world and not leaving any footprint and leaving it a better place,” Jeanne Santovasco, Austin’s mother, told The Washington Post.

Sources: CBS News, People, Daily Mail, The Washington Post